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Asthma, a chronic, common condition characterized by symptoms of wheezing, breathlessness, chest tightening, and cough, is an inflammatory disorder that causes airway hyperresponsiveness and airflow obstruction.1
Uncontrolled asthma can have a profound, negative effect on a patient’s quality of life. Despite current interventions and substantial healthcare investment, approximately 250,000 people worldwide die each year from asthma; almost all these deaths being avoidable.1
Allergen sensitization is a critical component to assess when diagnosing asthma. Up to 80% of patients with allergies are sensitized to more than one allergen.2 Exposure to allergens can cause airway inflammation and increase the risk for an exacerbation.3 Guidelines suggest identifying factors that can instigate asthma, including allergens, when evaluating a patient.3 Assessing a patient’s symptom threshold by testing IgE and identifying relevant sensitizing allergens can help clinicians make the most accurate diagnosis and treatment plan.3
The identification of allergens is important not only to the diagnosis and management of asthma but to other conditions and diseases as well.
Asthma affects approximately 300 million people in the world,1 and is estimated to affect 400 million people by 2025.1
Children with asthma and concomitant food allergy have a seven times higher risk for life-threatening asthma exacerbations4,5
Patients with asthma, allergen, exposure, and viral infection face a nearly 20-fold increased risk for hospitalization compared to patients with allergies alone6
Patients with asthma plus an allergy to peanuts or tree nuts are at an increased risk for fatal anaphylaxis7